Stuck in a bog. Check someone’s blog.

I’m not entirely sure that the title makes sense, but hopefully it will after you read this.

I’ve posted in the past about how I’ve always found blogs pointless. In fact, although I’m enjoying this a lot more than I thought I would, I still doubt that I would be blogging if it weren’t for this subject. Facebook and YouTube waste enough of my time… Anyway, that’s irrelevant.

For once, I want to talk about how useful blogs can be.

I won’t lie. Most of the time that I do the readings for this subject, they don’t make sense. Or perhaps they make sense after the 5th reading. (I wouldn’t know, I never have the time.) And so when I’m stuck, confused over just how “the use of visual metaphors from older media in web design…naturalize[s] the limitations of the new medium by disguising them within those of older media” (just one of our weekly blog questions for those playing at home – reader pg 228), I scratch my head. Then I scratch my ear. And then I go fishing. For blogs.

That’s right. After someone suggested it in class (probably our tutor Nicole, thanks!) I decided to check other people’s blogs to see what they thought of the readings. (Other people in this case refers to classmates, my fellow Net Commers).

No, don’t get worried. I don’t do it to plagiarise, I do it to decipher. While I use WordReference for French, I use blogs for Net Comm. A translation of the readings into English, or at least people english, not computer english.

One of the most useful blogs has been Allan’s. (http://allanalderson.wordpress.com/)

Allan is the resident mature age student in our class, and thus the envy of everyone else. Why? His real world/life experience has given him actual organizational skills and the motivation to turn up to lectures. Damn him and his wisdom. But back to the point. When I’ve needed it, Allan’s blogs have provided the insight I’ve been looking for, and he always has some cool videos too. (So thanks Allan! Hope you don’t mind.)

And while, perhaps not world changing (at least not often) this is what blogs are best for. Giving people the opportunity to express their thoughts. I’ve argued that blogs are, at their core, inherently personal. And while I’ve always viewed such a personal outlet as trivial, I do see how blogs can allow other like-minded (or similarly enrolled) individuals to find and develop a community. Bringing people from all walks of life, all over the world, together. It’s true that everything is news to someone, and whether you find something interesting while I find it pointless is irrelevant. It’s about giving people a voice, even if that voice is rarely heard.

**UPDATE: While I’m at it, SWOTVAC has given me the time to trawl some other net comm blogs. Some great ones include:

Perry’s (http://pjsingleton.wordpress.com/). Who’s got over 1000 hits, so I assume I’m not the only one who does this!

And Jessica’s (http://jessicasargeant.wordpress.com/). Super insightful.

Well done guys. Great jobs!***

So while I’m still sold on all the benefits of blogging, I am starting to see its usefulness. And since the blogosphere literally has too many blogs too count, I guess plenty of others do too.

And that’s why, when you’re stuck in a bog. Check someone’s blog.

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